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Alcohol, Cannabis, Tobacco, & Opioids

Substance use among post-secondary students often leads to substance misuse or abuse, as many are unaware about the effects and consequences of substances like cannabis and alcohol.

Many substances, legal and prohibited, can become severe health hazards when used in excess. Many university students may come into contact with these substances and be pressured into using them. It is important for all students to be educated on their personal limits, safe usage, various risks, and spotting overdoses. By following safe usage tools and low-risk guidelines, users can begin to consume various substances in a safer manner reducing risk of overdoses, dependence and death.

Expandable List

The McMaster University Alcohol Policy ensures the responsible management of alcoholic beverages being served on campus or during sanctioned university events.

How can we reduce or stop drinking? In university culture, binge drinking is particularly popular and can result in a number of health concerns. There are also many strategies and tools that can help us reduce or stop our use of alcohol:

Cannabis, similar to other substances, can pose a number of health risks.

At any age, cannabis can affect the way that the brain functions. This can impact your attention, memory, and learning.

The most common addiction in Canada is tobacco. Smoking kills, but quitting is possible!

Other Resources

  • Leave The Pack Behind is a tobacco control program that offers individuals 18 – 29 years of age smoking and quitting information, personalized support, and quitting resources – all for free. It is funded by the government of Ontario.
  • Visit us at the Student Wellness Centre for appointment to see a physician for your free Nicotine Replacement Therapy.
  • Smoker’s Helpline: for news, tips, and to be in touch with those who have quit, are trying to quit, or are supporting others. They are also on Twitter!
  • Hamilton Public Health offers a Tobacco Hotline (905-540-5566)

According to the Federal Government of Canada, opioid overdoses have become increasingly common in Canada with an estimated 4000+ deaths in 2017 alone. Just a few grains of salt worth of fentanyl can be enough to kill someone when ingested or injected.

Naloxone can be used to temporarily reverse an opioid overdose until medical emergency services arrive.

Naloxone kits are available without a prescription at local pharmacies, including: King Medical Pharmacy, McMaster Health Campus Pharmacy, McMaster University Centre Pharmasave (in MUSC), Metro Pharmacy, all Shoppers Drug Marts, Whitney Plaza Pharmacy. EFRT responders also carry naloxone.